Opportunity is Waiting

Just 10 minutes outside of Raleigh, Downtown Garner is on the verge of booming big. Public investment in downtown, coupled with Garner’s small town atmosphere, is catalyzing opportunities for private development – come for the convenience, stay for the community.

current Development projects

Metro 201 Project

An exciting opportunity for growth is on the horizon, as the Downtown Garner Association works with the Town of Garner on a public-private partnership to develop a 12,000 square foot infill site on Main Street.


The Downtown Garner Association has been on the front end of this development project, building vision and advocating for a new commercial anchor that will attract fresh attention to downtown.  Envisioned as a community gathering space with a mixture of evening entertainment offerings on Main Street, this project will help Downtown Garner live up to its vision of becoming a destination for local flavor and flair in Garner. The site will be the first new commercial space built in Downtown Garner since the 1980s and offers the largest potential footprint for ground level retail/restaurant space on Main Street, with up to 3 stories of multi-family apartments above.


To guide development of this unique public-private partnership, the Town worked with DGA and the UNC School of Government’s Development Finance Initiative for over two years to create a set of guiding public interests, complete a market and feasibility study, and develop an on-site tabletop parking solution to meet the needs of the site.  At the end of 2020, DFI conducted a competitive RFP solicitation to market the site to local and regional developers.


Lansing Melbourne Group (LMG), one of three applicants, was selected for their expertise with urban parking solutions, sourcing locally grown retail tenants, and providing high quality residential opportunities at reasonable price points.  LMG is a Florida-based development firm with similar downtown mixed-use projects underway in Concord, Kannapolis, and Gastonia.


Metro 201, LMG’s Garner project, will bring 101 new residential units, 5,500 square feet of new commercial space, and over 100 new parking spaces to Downtown Garner in late 2024.  Metro 201 will also feature eye catching public art by local artists and electric vehicle charges as amenities for residents and downtown visitors.  The development is estimated to generate $17-$20 million dollars in private investment to downtown.  Once completed, the new development will unite the new Garner Recreation Center with the historic business district and expand Main Street’s commercial core by 50%.

LMG Presentation to Council 2.28.22

In partnership with

Economic Development Strategies

Downtown Garner’s economic development priorities focus on transformative strategies that are based on local assets, stakeholders, existing business concentrations that attract specific customer bases,  encourage complimentary development, and make downtown a destination.

Creative Entrepreneurship

Tech companies, artists, and creative entrepreneurs of all types call Downtown Garner home.  Located only 5 miles from Downtown Raleigh, our historic business district is an appealing and affordable alternative for every type of business from growing start ups to unique evening entertainment to mom’n’pop shops.

 Building Identity as Destination for

  • A cool place to work
  • Alternative to Downtown Raleigh
  • Creative businesses to get started
Assets & Stakeholders
  • Town Owned Development Site
    • Largest opportunity for new office/retail space
  • Gearworks Bridge Space
    • Town support for growing start up businesses
    • Generates interest in working downtown
  • Cluster of Creative/Tech Businesses
    • Garner Underground
    • Operation 36
    • Bluewave Deployment
    • Grafix House Design Studio
  • Invested Entrepreneurs with locally owned businesses
    • Full Bloom Coffee
    • Shady’s
    • Locs, Naturals, & More
    • Ball & Minor CPA
    • Carroll Service Company
Target Markets

Target Customers

  • Developers to build new spaces
  • Entrepreneurs growing out of coworking/work from home situations
  • People who want unique locally owned restaurant/retail

Target Businesses Sectors

  • Start ups related to existing businesses
  • Coworking/Makers’ Space
  • Locally owned retail/restaurant
  • Entrepreneurs in need of minimal space

Cultural Arts

Downtown Garner has a growing reputation as a destination for cultural arts, driven by the growth of artisanal manufacturing, creative design, and placemaking public art.  An outstanding performance venue and craft driven events to round out Downtown Garner’s cultural offerings, with more opportunities for creativity and public art on the horizon.

Building Identity as Destination for

  • High quality live entertainment
  • Community-driven visual arts
  • Craft/artisan businesses
Assets & Stakeholders
  • Garner Performing Arts Center
    • It’s Showtime!
    • Broadway Voices
    • Garner Town Players
    • Local event/performance space
  • Place-making visual arts
    • Sean Kernick’s Garner Mural
    • Holiday window art
    • Financial support for public art
  • Locally owned craft/artisan businesses
    • Full Bloom Coffee
    • Grafix House Design Studio
    • Shady’s
    • Coming soon: Aristotle Spirits
  • Retail/arts driven events
Target Markets

Target Customers

  • People looking for unique food & drink offerings
  • Live performance enthusiasts
  • Locals looking for entertainment destination

Target Businesses Sectors

  • Makers’ Space/Coworking businesses
  • Locally owned/artisan food & drink offerings
  • Performance/event venues

Community Recreation

Downtown Garner is a hub for active living and community recreation, with its walkable streetscape and access to many of the town’s most popular sports destinations and community centers.  Main Street is an ideal location for businesses looking to cater to active families, outdoor enthusiasts, and engaged community members.

Building Identity as Destination for

  • Local sports & recreation events
  • Regional tournaments
  • Urban living for active lifestyles
Assets & Stakeholders
  • Private Recreation Businesses
    • Garner Baseball
    • Polar Ice House Garner
  • Parks, Recreation & Cultural
    Resources staff & facilities
    • New Recreation Center
    • Garner Senior Center
    • Garner Rec Park
    • Avery Street Rec Center
    • PRCR offices in downtown
  • Walkable downtown environment
    • 2 mile sidewalk loop
    • Pedestrian wayfinding
    • Indoor/outdoor walking track
      at Rec Center
Target Markets

Target Customers

  • Families with kids in leagues/tournament sports
  • Millenials/Empty Nesters who want to live near amenities
  • Active lifestyle/outdoor enthusiasts

Target Businesses Sectors

  • Food & drink geared toward families
  • Outdoor/sports related retail
  • Sports medicine offices

The Downtown Garner Association works closely with Garner Economic Development to match entrepreneurs and developers with the information and resources they need to choose Garner for their businesses.

Visit ChooseGarnerNC.com for more information about the greater Garner community, including available properties, target industries, taxes & incentives, and opportunity zones.